Perseids Meteor Shower 2012: How to See The Show
The meteor shower will be at its peak Saturday night into early Sunday. Will you watch it?
One of the great shows of the summer hits the skies this weekend as the Perseids meteor showers get underway.
The Perseids are a meteor shower that have shown up in early August for about the last 2,000 years. Earth passes through the orbit of the Swift-Tuttle Comet, and the debris that encounters Earth's upper atmosphere is heated to the point of incandescence. To us, they look like shooting stars.
According to Space.com, Saturday night into early Sunday is the peak time for the Perseids, as that's when Earth will be in the center of the comet's track.
Hopefully, the weather will cooperate. The forecast calls for the chance of a shower Saturday evening, giving way to partly cloudy skies.
Where around Westlake should you watch the Perseids?
Lake Erie Nature and Science Center has a family-friendly presentation on meteors starting at 9 p.m. Saturday at their planetarium. At 10 p.m., everyone will head outside to see the meteors. Bring a blanket to sit on. Admission is $3 per person for the presentation. There is no admission for coming to sit outside.
There's always your own backyard. Here are some tips for viewing the Perseids.
- Dress warmly, as it can get chilly late at night.
- Get as far away as possible from any other sources of light. If you're watching outside your home, turn off all interior lights.
- Give your eyes several minutes to adjust to the dark.
- Look to the southeast, where the meteors are at their brightest and longest.
- Be patient. Up to 20 to 30 meteors should be visible each hour at random intervals.